CNES has always been particularly attentive to SMEs, especially those related to space technologies—mainly due to their proactiveness and ability to innovate. With the aim of fostering, encouraging and supporting SME development, as laid down in ‘Innovation & Inspiration”—the Government-CNES objectives and performance contract for 2016-2020—CNES each year draws up and implements an Action Plan dedicated to SMEs. This Plan is subjected to rigorous monitoring via an annual review and update.
The 2017 Plan contains 30 undertakings, divided into four main areas:
- Enabling SME-driven innovations to enhance the space sector
- Facilitating SME access to government procurement
- Strengthen the relationship between SMEs and CNES
- Support the economic development of SMEs over and beyond CNES’s markets.
The SME Action Plan is a key focus for the watchdog set up by SME association Pacte PME, of which CNES has been a member since its creation in 2010. The Plan is a major determining factor in the association’s stance regarding CNES actions to support SMEs. In 2016, Pacte PME applauded CNES, with those SMEs encountered expressing their satisfaction and recognizing the timeliness of CNES’s actions in their favour.
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